NEHEMIAH 4: “8And they all plotted together to come and fight against Jerusalem and to cause confusion in it. 9And we prayed to our God and set a guard as a protection against them day and night.
“13So in the lowest parts of the space behind the wall, in open places, I stationed the people by their clans, with their swords, their spears, and their bows. 14And I looked and arose and said to the nobles and to the officials and to the rest of the people, “Do not be afraid of them. Remember the Lord, who is great and awesome, and fight for your brothers, your sons, your daughters, your wives, and your homes.”
“16From that day on, half of my servants worked on construction, and half held the spears, shields, bows, and coats of mail. And the leaders stood behind the whole house of Judah,”
I. VISIONARIES PRAY BUT THEY ALSO KEEP GUARD.
Vs.9. We prayed but we also kept guard.
· You pray but also use obvious protection.
· Pray for God’s protection for your business but keep your money in the bank. Do not make deals that you have not investigated, avoid quick deals that promise a lot.
· We pray but also lock our houses.
· We pray but we also try to eat healthy, we take our kids for immunization, we get treatment when we get sick, we exercise
· We pray before we travel but we also use seat-belts.
· We pray for God’s protection from sin but girls, do not visit your fiancée’s home at night. You do not have to accompany your friends to angenoir!
THE BOTTOM LINE IS VISIONARIES PRAY BUT THEY ALSO USE THEIR HEADS.
II. WE MUST FIGHT AS WE WORK
Vs.16. “From that day on, half of my servants worked on construction, and half held the spears, shields, bows, and coats of mail. And the leaders stood behind the whole house of Judah.”
The plan of the enemy is to get your focus and attention from the goal. Do not let him.
Everything that you got by prayer you will keep by prayer. Business, spouse, children, health, profession, ministry. (Some people as soon as they get their dream job, they stop prayer, their dream husband or wife, and the blessing takes the place of God).
Remember the devil’s desire is to put you down, he hates your family, he hates your health, he hates your business, he hates your big vision.
Do not be ignorant. Do not be naïve. Don’t take things for granted. Cover the bases.
1Peter 5: “8Be sober-minded; be watchful (self-controlled and alert). Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. 9Resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same kinds of suffering are being experienced by your brotherhood throughout the world.”
III. THE NATURE OF OUR ENEMY.
EPHESIANS 6:10Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. 11Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. 12For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. 13Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm. 14Stand therefore, having fastened on the belt of truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, 15and, as shoes for your feet, having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace. 16In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one; 17and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God, 18praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. To that end keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints, ”
Ø He is not human but spiritual.
o But he can use people to torment us.
Ø He is not weak but powerful.
o But our God is more powerful than him.
o He can use the obvious or the subtle to fight us. ( be alert)
In the same way minimize challenges by being careful.
IV. HOW DO WE FIGHT?
Truth is truth, do not live a life of lies, even when it looks that a lie will save you. The devil thrives on lies and whenever you allow it, you give him tools to use against you.
2. BREAST PLATE OF RIGHTEOUSNESS
Right standing with God. This may mean many things but what I have found is that, when I am in right standing with God, I am more confident in prayer but also in the things I do. Whenever you find your self short of God’s stand clear it quickly. It may be a sinful issue in your life it may be anger or bitterness or it may be anything you are hiding from God.
3. READNESS OF THE GOSPEL
Let the people you deal with know who you are. Speak the Gospel, keep a Bible on your desk, use every opportunity to let people around you know that you are a believer.
4. SHIELD OF FAITH.
Stand your ground in God. Vs. 10-11
Nehemiah told the people:14And I looked and arose and said to the nobles and to the officials and to the rest of the people, “Do not be afraid of them. Remember the Lord, who is great and awesome, and fight for your brothers, your sons, your daughters, your wives, and your homes.”
FAITH IS KNOWING WHO YOU ARE AND KNOWING WHOSE YOU ARE. IT IS KNOWING THE POWER THAT WORKS WITH IN YOU.
2 COR 10: “3For though we walk in the flesh, we are not waging war according to the flesh. 4For the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh but have divine power to destroy strongholds. 5We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ,”
5. HELMET OF SALVATION
Helmet protects the very important part of your body. That is where your mind is. That is where your eyes are, that is the control center.
Salvation gives you the foundation for fighting. You have the spirit of God in you which means that your house is occupied, the devil may attack but he usually stops on the surface.
Jesus is not a neighbor, he is your Lord, your master your friend. You can access him easily at any time.
6. SWORD OF THE SPIRIT.
THE WORD. This is not holding the Bible in your hand, or putting under your pillow, it is having the word in you, through reading, studying, memorizing. Jesus fought the enemy by telling him what the word says.
Hebrews 4: “12For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.”
V. Fighting through prayer.
Verse 4: “4Hear, Oh our God, for we are despised. Turn back their taunt on their own heads and give them up to be plundered in a land where they are captives. 5Do not cover their guilt, and let not their sin be blotted out from your sight, for they have provoked you to anger in the presence of the builders.”
Verse 9: “9And we prayed to our God and set a guard as a protection against them day and night.”
Nehemiah prayed when he heard about Jerusalem and God gave him a vision.
He prayed for opportunity and God opened the heart of the king.
And now when the enemies threatened them he led the people to prayer.
What you got through prayer you will maintain through prayer. If you are to go anywhere in God, it is going to be by prayer.
The wall had to be built, but the enemies of the Jews and the enemies of God were up in arms. They fought with words, threats and with attacks.
Prayer is the greatest weapon that God gave to us.
Pray when you feel like it and pray when you do not.
Pray when you are fearful and pray when you are discouraged. Pray that God will give you courage and pray that he will give you stamina.
THE WALL MUST BE BUILT.
Are you willing to pay the cost?
Are you willing to do whatever it takes to win?